And then they discovered an old phenom.
Where would the Dodgers be right now if
Gordon, 26, has pretty much become the ideal leadoff hitter. Friday night against the
After failing as a shortstop, after bouncing back and forth to the minors, after runs as an outfielder and utility player, Gordon has very much made himself at home at second base.
“Dee has not panicked this year,” said Manager
Gordon, a left-handed hitter, is unexpectedly hitting left-handers particularly well. He's hitting .311 against them this season, after hitting .221 in his first three seasons.
“I always liked to hit lefties,” Gordon said. “That’s why I didn’t switch-hit. I was a switch-hitter at first. Then I told my dad (former major-league pitcher
At 18 he gave up switch-hitting. He now utilizes his great speed, tries to avoid fly balls and is consistent with his swing. And if it doesn't work one night, he stays on track.
"I think the back-and-forths have helped him," Mattingly said. "It is a sign of maturity. So many guys change, then they're lost. He has stabilized his approach this year."
It's the new Dee Gordon, answer to the Dodgers' baseball prayers. A player who kept working hard and now is getting it all together.